Recently, I just went through my 90 day evaluation with my full time job. This included a meeting with my boss and we went over observations and goals that she has noticed since I have been working. She explained to me how she wished she had my organization. I would like to say I was surprised by this answer, but the truth is that I have heard this throughout my life. Organization became a healthy habit of mine and I would not like it any other way (even if people claim that I have mild OCD).
There have been times when people will explain that they wish they had my organizational skills. So I am here to help all of those lost souls who need guidance. I promise, if you follow these steps it is full proof.
However, there is a disclaimer. You MUST commit to making this a habit as well to make it work. You won't regret it.
1. GET A CALENDAR!
This is the most important rule of all. Having a calendar is the only way to really be organized. If you are like me, you can get a few calendars. While I was in college, I had up to four calendars at a time. One for homework assignments, tests and projects, another for just everyday life, one for just meeting notes, and another for to do lists of each day. It may sound insane, but it worked for me. I never missed an assignment and was prepared for when tests would come up. I knew when every meeting, class, work shift, event was because it was in my calendar. I knew what we talked about in the meeting, or what ideas were sparked because I wrote it down in one. I knew exactly what I planned to do that day and little tasks that needed to be done because I had a to do list. So one of the KEY elements to being organized is get a calendar. I don't mean you need to get four like I did, I only have two now, including my Passion Planner. Just get at least one. Please.
2. Write things down.
I would normally say this as "make a to-do list" instead of just writing things down. But this is modified because sometimes it is hard to get to the former. Write down birthdays. Write down holiday parties. Write down every time you have a class or work shift. Yes, even if it is your full time job and it is the same everyday. WRITE IT DOWN! I want you to write everything down somewhere. Preferably in your calendar, but if you don't have anything else besides your hand, use that and then transfer it to paper as soon as you can (and then don't lose it). This will make things a lot easier. That way you don't have to rely on your brain for every detail. You can just look in your calendar and say "Oh yeah! That training is after work on Wednesday and should last about an hour. They are providing food so I don't have to pack a dinner. Awesome." It's really that simple.
3. Color coordination can help you out.
Color coordination is greatness. I use specific colors to show what items are in my calendar. Pink is my full time job, blue is my part time job, green is family events, yellow is extra activities, black is scheduled workouts, and then I just use whatever color I want for others. This way, I can have a quick overview of things that are going on in my week. If I see a green somewhere on the calendar, that would make me take a second look because it is not normal to have on my calendar. This method is not for everyone. If you want to try it out, feel free too.
4. Keep clutter free.
I mean keep your area clean. This is one I actually struggle with constantly. If I told anyone this, they would be shocked. (Insert that time here.) I keep my desks/work areas at my jobs clean and clutter free. It is my bedroom area that needs work. I am almost never in my room besides to sleep and get ready in the morning. So when I bring things in my room they normally just get thrown in a pile somewhere and it just continuously grows. However, work wise, my area is clean and clutter free.
5. Work smarter, not harder.
Make your life easier for yourself. At work, I have binders for almost everything, posters to help me remember things and a large stack-able file system. I keep things in containers, and also by category. If you need binders, notebooks, sticky notes, notepads, colored pens, etc. BUY THEM! If it is going to make your life easier, then get them. I promise it is worth the money, because it is only helping you. If you don't want to get expensive items, but still want something similar, go to a dollar store. They have most things you will need. If it will make your life easier, it will make you more organized. Use these to your advantage. For my job, I have to observe children to see where they are in readiness for kindergarten. However, I made it easier on myself and the other teacher by making a schedule on who was to be watched each week (one per week per teacher) and posted it in my classroom to help us out. You can do something similar if you need to. Schedule your life out and post it to help make your life easier.
6. Ultimately, do what works for you.
I could give you all of this information and you can say, no you're wrong, I have my own method. You are right. I could be wrong. If you have your own method and it works for you, then do that. This is purely my opinion and what works for me. However, I have helped some people get their life on track with these methods. This can be applied to all aspects of life: home life, bills, work, chores, etc. The list could go on for awhile. However, make sure it is working for you or you might want to try something else.
Hopefully these six steps helped you with your organizational problems. If you want personalized help, please feel free to ask me by messaging me on this website in Contact Me. I can do my best to help you out because I like to get people on track with their lives.
Until next time,